Holiday eating tips to let go of the guilt

The holidays are fast approaching and even though it is a joyful period for many people, it can be a much more stressful time for those who have an unhealthy relationship with food and their body, given the abundance of food available.

On one side, you have people who feel compelled to eat like there’s no tomorrow, knowing that they will restrict themselves in January. And on the other side, you have those who will deprive themselves from eating the foods they deem too caloric during the holidays, despite loving those same foods.
Those two extremes will undoubtedly lead to a loss of control when it comes to food, guilt and short term changes instead of focusing on developing a healthy lifestyle.

During this festive period, try to focus on being more mindful in an attempt to be more in tune with your body. For instance, instead of being on auto-pilot mode, be aware of the reason why you are eating. Is it simply because the food is in front of me? Or because everyone else around me is eating? To break that auto-pilot mode, choose foods that are satisfying and appealing to you. Above all, give yourself the permission to savour those foods. You will be surprised to realize that enjoying food without guilt will enhance your satisfaction for the foods and in the end, you might eat less. Remember, what is forbidden is always more appealing!

Additionally, very often, even if we already feel full, we might feel the urgency to keep eating the meat pie or the Christmas cookies due to the fact that we won’t have the occasion to eat them soon enough. But if you allow yourself to eat them more frequently, for instance by freezing the meat pie or making it more often, you will see that the food becomes less appealing and this will help you listen better to your fullness signals.

And even if you eat too much, do not worry about it and trust your body. The latter is wise enough to find its balance again by adjusting your hunger and fullness cues at the next meals. On this note, try to make the most of this festive period by celebrating with families and friends without any guilt!